Tiruchirapalli

Banana growers disappointed over lukewarm demand, dip in prices

The average price of a bunch of banana at the Kattuputhur Regulated Market auction held on Monday was ₹130 and the maximum price was ₹400

The average price of a bunch of banana at the Kattuputhur Regulated Market auction held on Monday was ₹130 and the maximum price was ₹400

Lukewarm demand and dip in prices, attributed to restrictions imposed in the wake of rise in COVID-19 cases, has dampened the spirits of banana farmers ahead of the Pongal festival in Tiruchi, a major banana growing belt in the State.

Banana farmers, who usually look forward for better prices in the rup up to the Pongal festival season, have been sorely disappointment as the prices have failed to appreciate this year as expected.

“Prices have dipped after a slight increase last week. The price of poovan, a traditional variety, has come down to ₹10-12 a kg now after going up to ₹18-19 a kg last week. Farmers were expecting it to touch ₹20 a kg this week,” said Manikutti A. Subramanian, treasurer of the Thottiyam based Tamil Nadu Banana Farmers Producers Company Ltd..

Demand is said to be lukewarm due to the restrictions, including closure of temples , imposed in view of the pandemic. Even the Sabarimala temple season, which normally sees good demand, has not been very encouraging this year, he said.

But production has been abundant. Of late there has also been a glut in the market, as many sugarcane farmers in the Cauvery belt in Tiruchi region have switched over to banana, Mr. Subramanian added..

The average price of a bunch of banana at the Kattuputhur Regulated Market auction held on Monday was ₹130 and the maximum price was ₹400. Nearly 50 tonnes of banana was traded at the auction held by the market functioning under the Tiruchi Regulated Market Committee of the Department of Agricultural Marketing and Agri Business.

At the wholesale banana market at Gandhi Market in Tiruchi, which attracts farmers and traders from various surrounding districts, the price of poovan variety hovered in the range of ₹100-550 a bunch, depending on the quality, on Wednesday, according to K. P. Palanivel, president, Plantain Traders Association.

Top quality ‘sevazhai’ and ‘rasthali’ varieties fetched ₹600 a bunch. The lowest grade of the varieties was being sold at ₹300 and ₹150 a bunch, respectively. Karpooravali was selling in the price band of ₹100 -500 a bunch and Elarasi was fetching ₹100-250 a bunch. Grand Naine was selling in the range of ₹150 -450 a bunch, Mr. Palanivel said.

“There has been no appreciable increase in demand ahead of the festival this year and prices have flattened out. There has been no big spurt in arrivals either. It has been rather a disappointing season for banana growers,” he added.


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Printable version | May 26, 2022 7:41:30 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/banana-growers-disappointed-over-lukewarm-demand-dip-in-prices/article38263836.ece